Media knows little of what’s going on in govt, that is the way it should be: Arun Jaitley

"At 9 pm, if you visit a minister’s office, you will find 50 per cent of the staff still working,” said Jaitley.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai | Updated: August 29, 2014 9:59 am
ARUN “At 9 pm, if you visit a minister’s office, you will find 50 per cent of the staff still working,” said Jaitley.

The Express Adda was back on Wednesday evening with Union Minister of Defence and Finance Arun Jaitley holding court in the packed Crystal Room of The Taj Mahal Palace and Hotel, Mumbai.

Jaitley gave an insight into what it was like working in the Narendra Modi government, did not think twice before taking potshots at the media, and said “acchhe din” is already here.

The 90-minute interaction, in which over 500 prominent citizens of Mumbai including top industrialists, politicians, socialites and dignitaries from various fields participated, left most wanting to know more of the new government’s agenda over the coming months and years.

Among those present were Deepak Parekh, Adi Godrej, Rahul Bajaj, Shobhaa De, Zia Mody, Milind Deora, state BJP chief Devendra Fadnavis, Rama Bijapurkar and former Mumbai sheriff Indu Shahani.

With his very first answer, Jaitley got the crowd interested. Explaining what is is like to work with Modi, compared with his earlier stint in the NDA government led by A B Vajpayee, he said, “Modi works from morning till night. He follows progress of major policies of each department. At 9 pm, if you visit a minister’s office, you will find 50 per cent of the staff still working.”

Stating that he earlier used to leave office by 6 pm for a cup of coffee with friends at the India International Centre, he said, “Now I leave at 11 pm”.

Jaitley also said the media hardly gets to know what the government is doing or about any of its decisions before they are made public. “Conventionally, the Indian media had become part of the establishment — aware of what’s going to be decided in the Cabinet, what move is being planned. They could predict a Cabinet or list of Governors days in advance,” he said.

That has changed now. And, according to Jaitley, that’s how it should be, “because the fun of the decision is lost otherwise”. Stating that the media doesn’t have too much of an idea what’s happening, he said, “That’s an issue. But that’s how it should be.”

Jaitley said the media also has to live with a government where it can’t report a corruption scandal everyday. “The government is taking decisions one by one. So it is becoming difficult even to criticise most decisions. We are much better off than we were. For instance, the Congress party criticised us because our Foreign Secretary decided to meet the Pakistani Foreign Secretary. There was shelling on the border. When we called it off over a good reason, they questioned why we did that,” he said.

When adman Suhel Seth wanted to know why the laws of the country are against men, although there are many single men in power today, Jaitley retorted, “Try and become Prime Minister”. The house erupted in applause.

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    ajay
    Aug 29, 2014 at 10:13 am
    mr jaitely forget about the media do you and others know what's happening in govt now? seems that only repackaging and rechristening of schemes is happening
    Reply
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      subhasis ghosh
      Aug 29, 2014 at 11:32 am
      Through an elaborate system of patronage built over the years, Congress has put together a number of sympathizers in the media who are constantly putting across the party's point of view, even better than its authorised spokespersons. The current government, headed as it is by a complete outsider to Delhi's charmed circle, is a problem for the media as it now has to really work hard to build contacts get breaking news. Media is not taking kindly to its diminished status and hence the constant negative coverage over a government that has just completed 3 months of its 60 months mandate.
      Reply
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        Venkataraman Balayogi
        Aug 29, 2014 at 3:58 am
        Media is getting buried with the pseudo secularists and the left and it could be one of the best moves of this government because half baked arm chair critics sitting in the comforts of air conditioned media studios and print media houses were acting as know all scholars sitting on judgment over everything combined with on the one hand a selective amnesia towards their pay master political outfits [pseudo secularists] and were blind to their corrupt politicians and also their ideology indoctrinating the left over lefts and never reported their negative contribution to the Indian economy , peace and harmony and on the other hand collective indifference to all the good work that were being done by many outfits political and otherwise.Media on the w was only concentrating in protecting the dubious funders, sensationalism,scandals and all other negative activities against the interests of the nation and harmony among its people. Now their very vital tool of gossips and leaks through power brokers in the corridors of Government of India has been broken and the government and ministers are not engaged in any clandestine deals or oneupmanship activities with deliberate half leaks to the select media houses etc the media is losing its importance and it deserves only this for all the nasty levels to which they stooped against the nation and its people. Modi and co continue in the same vein and push away the por media houses relevance as much as possible .They even created a new political outfit [AAP] to split the anti- corruption and anti congress votes and engaged in a relentless sponsored lies in the form of anti -Modi tirade and anti -Gujarath model etc.The media even created a new political outfit [AAP] to split the anti- corruption and anti congress votes and engaged in a relentless sponsored lies in the form of anti -Modi tirade and anti -Gujarath model etc. But I wrote long back the obvious which these petty media wallahs never bothered to notice as they were living the euphoria of heavy pay checks . Not a single media house condemned the Jallian wala bagh of post independent India perpetrated on the innocent people who were sleeping at Baba Ramdev's meeting. The ghost of that poor lady Bala will definitely haunt Congress and the media for many more years and especially those who were directly responsible for that macre1.:contentwriteups.blogspot/20...2.:contentwriteups.blogspot/20...3.:contentwriteups.blogspot/20...
        Reply
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          Venkataraman Balayogi
          Aug 29, 2014 at 3:47 am
          The media even created a new political outfit [AAP] to split the anti- corruption and anti congress votes and engaged in a relentless sponsored lies in the form of anti -Modi tirade and anti -Gujarath model etc.Read this latest :indianexpress/artic... . But I wrote long back the obvious which these petty media wallahs never bothered to notice as they were living the euphoria of heavy pay checks . Not a single media house condemned the Jallian wala bagh of post independent India perpetrated on the innocent people who were sleeping at Baba Ramdev's meeting. The ghost of that poor lady Bala will definitely haunt Congress and the media for many more years and especially those who were directly responsible for that macre1.:contentwriteups.blogspot/20...2.:contentwriteups.blogspot/20...3.:contentwriteups.blogspot/20...
          Reply
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            Debol Mukherjee
            Aug 29, 2014 at 1:26 pm
            This is called work culture.Friends learn work culture from Modiji and his colleagues.
            Reply
            1. I
              Indian
              Aug 29, 2014 at 5:40 am
              media needs to be controlled, or else media feels they are running the government, what mr. Modi is doing 200% correct: we don't want paid media to be part in governance.
              Reply
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                kris kary
                Aug 29, 2014 at 6:46 pm
                Most of the media cover one side story, I mean to say they cover one side story, some times certain staff works beyond working hours to meet the urgency of work. It is true, that the Media (people) never cover such type of news.
                Reply
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                  swamy nk
                  Aug 29, 2014 at 7:08 am
                  Most of the print and television media is in hands of very rich and influential.These editors can influence several decisions ,hence what Modi and co are doing is the right thing,keep the media at a safe distance to speculate.
                  Reply
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